“Thoughtfully haunting and sometimes beautifully written, the first of Hjelm’s cases to be translated into English is likely to resonate with readers of the Stieg Larsson trilogy.” —Kirkus (starred)
“A truly fine crime novel.” —Baton Rouge Advocate
Looking for your next mystery/thriller read this summer? Meet Paul Hjelm: father, husband, and soon-to-be ex-detective? OK, maybe not the latter.
“Mystery devotees who loved Mankell’s Kurt Wallander, and crime fiction ‘lifers’ who still treasure Sjowall’s and Wahloo’s Martin Beck, will want to add Paul Hjelm to their short lists of international favorites.” —Booklist (starred)
Facing a possible career ending investigation following his successful—but out-of-protocol—charge in an intense hostage situation, Paul is extricated by Detective Superintendent Jan-Olov Hultin into an elite investigative task force rightfully coined ‘the A-Unit.’ Now with a serial killer targeting Sweden’s high-profile business leaders, the pressure is on for Paul and the A-Unit to track down this shrewd and deadly ritualistic killer.
Two bullets delivered to the victim’s head, always against a wall, bullets then carved out from said wall—leaving no other traces behind—become the killer’s signature mark. Oh yes, and he just so happens to professionally execute all this as he listens to a recording of Thelonious Monk’s jazz classic “Misterioso.”
As Paul and his team tenaciously piece together every angle or connection between the victims, they must also face a dwindling time clock—a killing every two days. The further they probe the more evident it becomes that the killer is not acting on typical maleficent motives, but is rather reflecting an inherent consequence of an increasingly xenophobic society.
An arresting look into Sweden’s contemporary problems, Arne Dahl delivers a bitingly honest, witty, and suspenseful read.
“An exciting debut…Fans of hard-boiled detective and Swedish novels will enjoy this.” —Library Journal
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